FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享S&P Global Market Intelligence ($):A proposal by several Democratic presidential hopefuls and environmental groups aimed at helping rural electric cooperatives transition away from coal-fired plants to renewable generation sounds relatively straightforward but, in reality, faces a number of challenges that put the viability of such an option in question.The Center for American Progress, Center for Rural Affairs, advocacy group Clean Up the River Environment and co-op association We Own It have suggested that Congress could help electric cooperatives transition to a greener generation portfolio by allowing the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Rural Utilities Service, or RUS, to forgive the outstanding debt that cooperatives owe related to coal-fired generation.As a second step, the groups said Congress could authorize the RUS and the U.S. Department of Energy to offer grants in lieu of tax credits to install renewable power capacity equivalent to that of the retired coal plants and fund related needed grid improvements. One of the proposals would make the debt relief contingent on investing in renewables.However, the potential impact of the proposal remains unclear, given that several of the co-ops with the most coal-fired generation no longer owe the federal government money. The plan also faces practical hurdles, such as gaining the support needed to change existing tax laws to accommodate the plan.The cooperative debt forgiveness and grant idea has nevertheless picked up new traction among some Democratic presidential hopefuls, including Sens. Kamala Harris and Elizabeth Warren and businessman Andrew Yang, who included one or both aspects of the proposals in their recent climate change plans.Electric cooperatives reduced their annual carbon dioxide emissions by 9% from 2009 through 2017 and have invested in 7.5 GW of wind generation and 900 MW of solar generation through ownership or power purchase agreements through 2018, according to a July report by the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association. Co-ops have another 3 GW of wind and solar generation capacity planned. But while the U.S. power sector, in general, has shifted from a coal-dominant mix to one led by natural gas, coal plants in 2017 accounted for 64.2% of cooperative-owned generation, the report said. The goal of the debt forgiveness and grants proposal is to provide the money cooperatives need to shutter coal plants and help them invest in renewables.More ($): Forgiving co-ops’ federal coal debt to promote renewables faces hurdles Green groups push debt forgiveness plan as means of moving U.S. co-ops away from coal generation
Brothers Malik and Keeran Sampson will both chase starting spots in the IMCA Hobby Stock main event at Super Nationals XXXV.Brothers Malik and Keeran Sampson are both Super Nationals veterans, Malik as a driver,Brothers Malik and Keeran Sampson will both chase starting spots in the IMCA Hobby Stock main event at Super Nationals XXXV.Keeran as a spectator.This year, both Worthington, Minn., hotshoes are running for starting spots in Saturday’s big Hobby Stock dance.Malik has qualified for the main event in three of his four previous trips to Boone, with a career best finish of seventh last year.“I like the atmosphere here. Super Nationals is fun and it’s challenging. I start to get nervous about three weeks beforehand,” he said. “This year I asked Keeran why he didn’t bring his car along. He was going to be buying a pit pass, anyway.”“I ran hot laps yesterday,” said Keeran, acknowledging that Boone was a different track than what he was used to. “Any time you go up against this many cars you never know what’s going to happen but I’m looking forward to racing here.”He also wouldn’t mind matching the accomplishment of neighbor to the south Elijah Zevenbergen and win a Super Nationals championship in his first competitive visit to Boone.